Memoir

The ‘Holi’ Ramayana

Sometimes what we start of as fun turn out to be so fatal. These unexpected incidents causing such fatalities turn out to be very good lessons for life and make us realise our drawbacks and identify our sensitivities and what we are allergic to.

I was having breakfast when i got a call from suneel asking me to come over and celebrate ‘Holi’, a revelry of colors. I knew my eyes were very sensitive to slightest amount of dust. They start getting wet and burn. I was totally careless about this fact until day. It was the same carelessness that caused this incident. I was smeared all over the face with water colors even before i could close my eyes tightly resulting in most it going into my eyes. Initially the burninng was light, though i was not able to open my eyes. I came back home and washed my face, but the burning started increasing even more. I thought i could sleep for some time so that i can forget the pain and it would have reduced by the time i get up. But how would i get sleep when my eyes themselves are burning. Even the eye drops i got from the nearest medical store wouldn’t work out.Finally, i had to go to the hospital. People around looking at me strangely and talking amongst themselves about our youthful mischief with snub and disregard rather than sympathy. I was looking like an african tribal.

There was a young journalist for Indian Express who was keeping the count of such fatalities, just to fill up space in her newspaper and not obviously out of any real concern for such incidents. I suppose she knew her facts and figures would not be of any help to the concerned people or the readers. It was, as i told, just to fill up the space. She approached me and asked how it happened. This was the first opportunity given to become famous (i was happy my name could come in paper atleast for this… i knew this was no reason to be proud of..ha ..ha). Suddenly a philosopher got into me, i happily gave all my details, name, profession, company
…etc. Started talking about the changed lifestyles of people like me, thier struggle and quest to acheive nothing…blah..blah.. and so on.

The young doctor, who had herself played holy ( It was evident out of her coloured hands…or it may even be out of washing the eyes of dozen of cases like me) started cleansing my eyes. She touched the Litmus paper on my eyes to test if acid was still present and cleaned until it was nil. I was releived when she told it is nothing serious and just ‘Internal neural congestion‘. I did not understand what she meant by it, but i was definite that nothing had happened and this disease must be in everyone if it was ‘just Internal neural congestion‘.

Though the article seems to be in a lighter vein, here are some tips to play holi and take care of your eyes.Not that i am very much enlightened by this incident and gained sufficeient knowledge to councel others…just some basic tips—

1) Take utmost care of your eyes, atleast until you die, though they are not fit enough donating to others, they are the most important external organ of your body.
2) Always play Holi with powder rather than water colours since chances of water going into eyes are most.
3) Always have Eye drops and other basic first-aid ready before playing Holi.
4) Say no to grease, turpentine, kerosene…etc and other Lubricants.
5) If color goes into your eyes, ask someone whose hands are not colored to wash your eyes.
6) Do not rub your eyes, just gently wipe your eyes with a clean cloth.
7) Do not use the same cloth again and again since they are already smeared with the chemicals and hence doing so would increase the burning sensation.
The newspaper article after the ‘Holi Ramayana’